March 14, 2022, The Illinois Interagency Task Force on Homelessness


March 14, 2022

2:00 PM to 3:30 PM

Meeting Agenda

  1. Welcome
    1. Christine Haley, Chief, Illinois Office to Prevent & End Homelessness (IOPEH)
    2. Sol Flores, Illinois Deputy Governor
  2. Data Informing the IL Plan to Prevent & End Homelessness
    1. Sean Connelly, Ethan Jantz, Rachel Cabrera, University of Illinois - Institute for Government & Public Affairs
  3. Reaching Functional Zero in Rockford
    1. Jennifer Jaeger, Community Services Director, City of Rockford
    2. Melanie Lewis Dickerson, Portfolio Lead, Community Solutions
  4. Overview of the IL Plan to Prevent & End Homelessness: IOPEH Chief & Agency Directors & Secretaries
  5. Public Comment
  6. Closing

Meeting Minutes


Task Force Members Present:

  • Delrice Adams, Executive Director, Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority
  • Brian Durham, Executive Director, Illinois Community College Board
  • Theresa Eagleson, Director, Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services
  • Amaal Tokars, Acting Director Illinois Department of Public Health (alternate)
  • Kristin Faust, Executive Director, Illinois Housing Development Authority
  • Christine Haley, Chief, Illinois Office to Prevent and End Homelessness (Chair)
  • Grace B. Hou, Secretary, Illinois Department of Human Services
  • Jennifer Parrack, Illinois Department of Corrections (alternate)
  • Ginger Ostro, Executive Director, Illinois Board of Higher Education
  • Terry Prince, Director, Illinois Department of Veterans' Affairs
  • Kristin Richards, Director, Illinois Department of Employment Security
  • Marc D. Smith, Director, Illinois Department of Children and Family Services
  • Marc Staley, Deputy Director, Governor's Office of Management & Budget
Christine Haley, Chief, Illinois Office to Prevent & End Homelessness (IOPEH)
  • Introductions
  • Sol Flores, Illinois Deputy Governor
    • Welcome address by Sol Flores, glad to have everyone as partners. These collaborations will bring Illinois into the forefront. Christine Haley is our new Homelessness Office Chief, and she brings an enormous amount of subject matter and expertise in this field. She is the perfect person for this task. Christine will take us through and how we will move forward.
    • Christine stated she was able to talk to all the directors one on one to discuss each plan.
    • Reviewed meeting rules.

Data Informing the IL Plan to Prevent & End Homelessness: Sean Connelly, Ethan Jantz, Rachel Cabrera, University of Illinois - Institute for Government & Public Affairs

  • Sean Connelly Presented a brief data snapshot on homelessness in Illinois, all data is 2020, before the pandemic so it is not influenced by the pandemic- This data is a one-night snapshot. It counts emergency shelters, people living on the street, and living in transition homes. It does not count people doubled up or staying with friends. The data is a one-night snapshot
  • In Illinois10431 individuals homeless, 2005 chronic homeless.
  • Chronic Homeless has increased
  • Ill has the lower prevalence when comparing to New York, and California. Illinois is comparable to Michigan.
  • 60% live in urban and surrounding Cook County area
  • 11% Spanish latinx, 4% Hispanic latinx in rural areas
  • Racial disparity- Black 74% experiencing homelessness, the racial disparity more extreme than ethnic. Black 7x more likely to experience homelessness
  • 2186 dependent children experiencing homelessness- this is far lower than ISBE numbers. Most according ISBE are living doubled up.
  • Youth was the largest subpopulation
    • Question:
    • IDVA- 7% made up of Veterans
    • Answer:
    • The number was 736 in 2020

Reaching Functional Zero in Rockford: Jennifer Jaeger, Community Services Director, City of Rockford, Melanie Lewis Dickerson, Portfolio Lead, Community Solutions

  • Community Solutions recently received 100,000 grant from the McArthur Foundation
  • Presentation: Reaching Functional Zero- Built for Zero
  • Community Solutions backbone is the Built for Zero program, a national change effort to prove that ending homelessness is possible.
  • 98 communities across the country are participating,14 communities have reached functional zero for at least one population. Within Illinois participating Lake County, McHenry County, Suburban Cook, Rockford, Winnebago, and Boone.
  • The 100,000 homes campaign focused on housing the most chronic and what mattered most was - could we get housing placements. We housed 105,000 chronic individuals. Many great lessons learned through this. In that same time frame, we had 100,000 experiencing homeless, what ended up happening is 20% decrease but did not see the impact we hoped. So, we went to Built for Zero and had to do things differently.
  • We needed a shared goal and definition and a consistent standard for measuring functional Zero.
  • Shared formula. # Of actively homeless < or = to 6-month average housing placement rate.
  • Operating system for Ending Homelessness
  • Shared Measurable Aim
  • Nimble command center team
  • Menu of proven technical strategies
  • Rapid by name feedback loop
  • Flexible housing service resources
  • The metric we want to see is really reaching zero, homelessness should be rare brief, and one time is the state we want to reach.
  • Made a shift to comprehensive real-time data. Work with communities to track the data and how people flow in and out of the system.
  • Critical to do this work with a racial equity focus.
    • Next Jennifer:
  • Chronic and veteran homelessness - Rockford has reached this goal. Today - 191, In 2013 we had 788 which we felt was an undercount.
  • We developed a strong court partnership to avoid eviction.
  • Before we started the program, we were reactive community, now we are extremely proactive with our partnerships and outreach programs.
  • No encampments left in the community.
    • Question:
    • How would you envision data being collected in a coordinated statewide manner?
    • Answer:
    • Currently our approach is at the local CoC level. We are doing work with other states to take a statewide approach and what statewide standards look like. This group can take opportunities to work with this. HMIS might be a backbone but could be a way to tie everything together statewide
    • Question:
    • You have lots of different agencies at the table are any of the workforce titles at that table?
    • Answer:
    • Yes, we have WIOA at the table.
    • Question:
    • Collective impact how important is that to success?
    • Answer:
    • It is critical, we are not allowed to list personal barriers for housing (i.e., Alcohol Abuse) we have to say where the resource is for this person who is an alcoholic. It's important to identify system barriers.
    • Question:
    • Impressive how the ratio is used, the built- in piece of the system that protects people from cycling back. Work and education and how to get sustainable income and how to build that in.
    • Answer:
    • Our theory is that if you look at coming in and exiting the system you won't be able to sustain without looking at all the data points so those returning to look at retention. We have to pay attention to all the pieces and bake it into the theory and data. People do need access to education and work or maybe they have a disability.
    • We do have housing for disabilities. We work with WIOA and community block grant for access to education as well as for job training. We have a program that provide scholarships to enter job training.

Overview of the IL Plan to Prevent & End Homelessness: IOPEH Chief & Agency Directors & Secretaries

  • Task force with primary structure that the Advisory provides guidance.
  • Action committee- subject experts engaged of your many staff.
  • Homeless Youth Subcommittee will fall under here
  • Initiatives:
    • Create Racial and Equity Roundtables
    • Rural homelessness Initiative
    • Homelessness capacity Building and Technical Assistance Center
    • Funding Sustainability
    • Community Education on Homelessness
  • Workgroups
    • Homeless youth
    • PHA work group
    • Homeless data analysis
    • Securing housing for person with criminal legal system involvement
    • Healthcare and homelessness
    • Transit System and homelessness work group
  • Each Director presented their plan more detailed points can be found in the presentation which will be posted on the website.
  • IHDA- Director Faust
    • Policy
      • Finance the creation and preservation of affordable housing- increasing the supply of affordable units. Several key programs advocate for additional housing with emphasis on PSH, we fund the building of new housing our goal is to increase this funding.
      • Section 811 targets for homeless, looking to increase funding for this, we just got a 7M award and want to expand the definition for who it serves
    • Process
      • Our primary client is the developer -, we have mandated a 10% set aside for units to be statewide referral network.
  • IDHS- Secretary Grace Hou
    • IDHS has 6 divisions, every division touch on homelessness, much of the work is at DFCS. IDHA and DHS have learned a lot about the eviction piece and legal piece during COVID and looking to continue this partnership.
    • Work closely with the CoCs, we have our Welcoming Centers, the first set of financial relief dollars did not benefit this population and our Welcoming centers were critical in assisting this population.
    • Domestic violence
    • Mental health
  • DCFS- John Egan/Director Smith
    • We tried to start adhoc committee years ago, but this is so much more effective.
    • Cash Assistance funds.
    • Youth Housing Advocacy Program so when youth leave our care, they nave housing. Place them before there case closes so they know how to be a renter.
    • Housing vouchers so parents can find housing and children won't be sent with parents who do not have housing.
    • Importance of working across systems of agencies- this can really be the key.
  • HFS- Theresa Eagleson
    • Pay a stable housing bonus was pulled during the past administration. We are implementing the 1115 housing services, tenancy support for Medicaid clients
    • Medical respite services with Medicaid approval
    • Additionally managed care organizations through case coordinator working with those at risk or homeless
    • Data- if we know how many of the 10,000 are Medicare eligible, I wonder if we can do a data match and put an indicator. - might be a good tool.
  • IDPH-Kristin
    • Presentation slides - Waive medical cannabis registry card fee
  • ICJIA Delrice Adams
    • Presentation slides
  • IDOC Jennifer Parrick
    • Approved housing for severe mental illness, compassionate release, sex offenders. Exciting to have partners to work on these things across the state for our special population. Lack of housing across the state.
  • IDJJ - Robert Vickery
    • Policy to eliminate a rough stop to our ability to help these youth.
  • Veteran's affairs- Terry Prince
    • Let us know if you come across a Veteran who is homeless whether they are enrolled or not.
    • Looking for the underserved veterans - in prison, LGBTQ, or those potentially entering homeless and being more proactive.
  • ISP
    • Christine Haley gave presentation- responses to encampments
  • ISBE - Cara Wiley
    • Wrap around Wednesdays
    • Extensive training for those who come into contact with the youth and the families that come into the school that we can provide support
  • IBHE- Ginger Ostro,
    • Presentation Slides
  • ICCB- Brian Durham
    • Service some of the most underrepresented people in the state. Help to navigate the components of higher education.
    • Perkins's act-ICCB adult ed and family literacy and GED prep - a lot of touchpoints for homeless students
  • DCEO-Casimir Peters
    • Community services block grant - additional dollars Covid relief to focus on shelters
  • IDES- Kristin Richards
    • Staff across the state to work with job opportunities for veterans.
    • Highlighted to increase the agencies outreach to organizations for people who are not accessing

Public Comment

  • Comments:
    • The count is one point in time 279,000 Affordable rental units. We always get stuck on the access to housing or access to shelter because of openings or adequate staff.
    • Bev Ebersold- Thanked everyone for their leadership and to see this work in action and providing a framework and acting with urgency. Exciting to see all the commitments